In a setback for the private television broadcaster New Delhi Television (NDTV), a New York court has ruled that the proper venue for its case regarding inaccurate and corrupt Television Audience Measurement (TAM) systems would be India rather than the U.S.
Last July, NDTV had filed a major suit against Nielsen group, Kantar group and TAM India in New York claiming damages of over $1 billion.
TAM India is a joint venture of Nielsen and Kantar group, and the latter’s parent company is the global advertising and marketing services giant, Wire and Plastic Products (WPP).
The debate in the case so far has been on the issue of jurisdiction. NDTV has argued that the case must be heard in the U.S. as Nielsen is a New York-based global enterprise, “that has successfully marketed and profited from its U.S.-originated television ratings system.” The channel had also argued that key witnesses are in the U.S., and would not come to testify in an Indian court. WPP, in a counter motion, had pleaded that since the alleged manipulation in ratings is by an Indian company, affecting an Indian channel, the case should be heard in an Indian court.
With the court indicating that the case falls under Indian jurisdiction, NDTV has said it will file an appeal in a higher U.S. court. In a statement, it said, “This lower court’s decision is based on several misconceptions, legal and factual errors, and this will be outlined in the appeal.”